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3 up, 3 down: FSU baseball finishes midweek sweep of Stetson

From blowout to nail biter in a hurry.

The No. 10 Florida State baseball team bounced back after dropping a weekend series at Wake Forest, finishing a sweep of the Stetson Hatters in Tallahassee today with an 8-6 win.

3 up

  1. The feel-good story of this game wore No. 19 and took the mound for the 'Noles. Andrew Karp, who missed all of last year after sustaining a serious leg injury in a horrific automobile accident, made the first start of his career. While Karp had struggled in four prior appearances out of the pen in amassing a 12.60 ERA, he once again demonstrated his propensity for coming back on Wednesday. Karp was impressive in scattering three hits and a lone earned run over five innings of work. He did not walk a batter.
  2. For the second straight game, the 'Noles jumped on the Hatters quickly. And once again, it came courtesy of freshman catcher Cal Raleigh in the first inning. On Tuesday he delivered via the solo shot, and today he claimed the FSU's first lead courtesy of a two-out RBI single. John Sansone continued his clutch ways as well, picking up a pair of steaks on a fifth-inning double, giving him a team-high 46 on the season.
  3. As it's been all season, the Florida State bullpen performed well (for the most part). Jim Voyles and Alec Byrd combined to throw three scoreless frames and get the 'Noles to the ninth up 8-1. But keep reading...

3 down

  1. It's always a good sign for FSU when coming up with negatives is a bit tough to do after a Seminole victory, and that's certainly the case today. That said, the 'Noles could certainly afford to miss a few more bats. Florida State pitching combined for just four strikeouts in this one; when your opposition is putting the ball in play that regularly, your defense is forced to make plays. And that's been a weak spot for FSU this season, even if they did flash the leather a bit today, courtesy of a couple of sliding plays by Taylor Walls at shortstop and a nice diving catch by Steven Wells, Jr. in right. But to keep with the emphasis on Ks, Walls also threw a ball away in the ninth that nearly facilitated an epic FSU collapse.
  2. To continue the nitpicking after the Seminoles put a snowman up in the runs column, they could use a little more pop out of the bats. Of Florida State's 10 hits, only three were for extra bases (a pair of doubles).
  3. Ed Voyles was called on to hammer the final nail in the coffin and pitch the ninth with a seven run cushion. When you have that kind of spread, you don't give your opponent free base runners; if they're going to pull off an improbable comeback, then you make them beat the odds and hit it where your defense isn't. Voyles commenced by walking the first two batters he faced. A double, two singles, and the aforementioned Walls error later, the 'Noles lead was just 8-6, and with a man on second, Stetson had the tying run at the plate. Hank Truluck bailed out Voyles when he made a nice running, backhanded catch and throw to first that very narrowly beat the Stetson batter to the bag.

Up next for the Seminoles is a home weekend series against Notre Dame that will begin Friday night.